Sunday, December 15

HOLIDAY & TRAVEL – Brighton Philharmonic Orchestra, Barry Wordsworth (conductor)

- March 4, 2019

The Maestro’s magical mystery tour started with Mendelssohn taking us happily away to the Hebrides and Fingal’s Cave, the bracing waves and romantic vistas replacing a damp blustery March afternoon outside. We ventured further North with Hugo Alfvén’s ‘Midsummer Vigil’ which is full of cheery folk tunes that are so hard to shake off. It was popularised as ‘Swedish Rhapsody’ in Mantovani’s lush 1953 arrangement.

Lyadov’s mysterious ‘The Enchanted Lake’ took us on into some remote Russian dreamscape until it was time for Honegger’s realistic depiction of a steam train, ‘Pacific 231’ to bring us to the interval.

Back in Blighty, we enjoyed the musical postcards of Eric Coates’ ever-popular suite ‘London Everyday’, followed by ‘The Banks of the Green Willow’, George Butterworth’s idyllic portrait of the Sussex countryside. Then suddenly the brass fanfares of Tchaikovsky’s ‘Capriccio Italien’ whisked us off to the warm excitement of Rome. We returned home happy by express train in the encore, Vivien Ellis’ ‘Coronation Scot’.

The typical programme of Overture/Concerto/Symphony was pleasantly subverted by this carefully curated collection of works more regularly played as overtures or encores, a delightful mix of nostalgia and fresh encounters. Their charm and panache lit up a dull afternoon.

Dome Concert Hall,
3 March 2019
Rating: ★★★★½
Andrew Connal




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